The Milwaukee Brewers made improvements to their outfield with the additions of Christian Yelich from the Miami Marlins’ fire sale and bringing back Lorenzo Cain as a free agent. The Brewers are cooking and they might not be done adding players yet. Hey, Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals, you better watch out, they are gunning for the National League Central division title this year.
The Brewers were a huge surprise in 2017. No one, not even the Brewers, themselves, expected to contend and play in the wildcard game this early as a rebuilding game. This is good for baseball. Why? The more teams there are that compete for a spot in the postseason, makes the season all more exciting. It also helps the MLB image as a professional sports league. Baseball isn’t the most exciting sport when it comes across the general audience because of the nine innings, three-hour ballgame, but once you come to understand how the game is played and knowing the players and teams, the investment is so worth it. The Brewers acquiring Cain and Yelich makes the Brewers, an intriguing team to watch for the 2018 season and beyond.
Baseball is a stage. Nine starters each for two teams. Expectations of performances are needed to be delivered. One team wins. One team loses. Big name players are relied on to help create a path to victory. The same big names are the moneymakers and are expected to deliver exceptional performances every night they play. Two managers have many strategies on how to lead their respective teams to victory. The Brewers have brought in two big names in Cain and Yelich to add to their current star power in fellow outfielder Ryan Braun, first baseman Eric Thames and third baseman Travis Shaw.
Cain agreed to a five-year deal, worth $80 million to return to Milwaukee after being traded to the Kansas City Royals for Zack Greinke in 2010. After seven years with the Royals, including two back to back world series appearances in 2014 and 2015, Cain comes back a better ballplayer and can provide world series experience to a young Brewers team that is hoping to win a division title for the first time since 2011, their first ever division title. Cain returning to his first organization where he began his major league baseball career will mean a lot to Brewers fans because it shows that loyalty is a crucial component when it comes to building playoff caliber teams. It also gives small market teams a big boost in morale when homegrown players return after time away from the organization. Adding new big name players like Yelich will also make big dividends in confidence for smaller market cities.
Yelich brings star power, possibly a superstar in the making, to Milwaukee after being traded during the Marlins’ fire sale that costs four minor league prospects. The Brewers gave up top prospect outfielder Lewis Brinson, outfielder Monte Harrison, infielder Isan Diaz and right-hand pitcher Jordan Yamamoto. After spending his whole career in Miami, Yelich brings an intriguing dynamic with his bat to a Milwaukee lineup that has provided power in home runs. He has the ability to hit either down the first and third base lines and in the outfield gaps for doubles. Doubles, in my opinion, are one of the most dangerous tools that a bat can have in the lineup. It keeps the rally going and the team offense can feed off the energy that doubles can bring. Having Yelich in the middle of the order lineup, the Brewers offense will be a force to be reckoned with for years to come. He will make it increasingly difficult for pitchers as they have to decide whether they want to face Braun, Shaw, Cain or Thames in close games. Yelich also has the agility to move in the outfield and can make nice plays with the glove. Brewers are getting a steal with Yelich.
The Brewers might not be done yet with adding new players, the team is interested in bringing in a free agent star pitcher to improve their starting rotation. Jake Arrieta from the Cubs or Yu Darvish from the Dodgers. If they add one of those pitchers it will be very intriguing to see what the Brewers can do in the season, provided the team is healthy. Adding Arrieta or Darvish would give the Brewers a star ace that they desperately needed. The Brewers are an exciting team to watch after the additions of Cain and Yelich but adding Arrieta or Darvish would be icing on the cake. The National League Central Division just got a lot more interesting this season.
Do you think Brewers will win the National Central Division title after the additions of Cain and Yelich? Let us know what you think @TheUtilityMan17 on Twitter!